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Spatial developments

Use of renewable energy for transport, 2005-2016

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Since 2007, the use of renewable energy for transport has increased, because petrol and diesel suppliers are obliged by law to use renewable energy. In 2015 and 2016, the share of renewable energy decreased to 4.6 per cent of total energy use for transport. The share for 2014 was just above 6 per cent.

Obligated share renewable energy for transport

It is laid down in Dutch law that part of the total use of petrol and diesel for transport must be renewable energy. This share increased from 2 per cent in 2007 to 6.25 per cent in 2015 (IenM, 2011) and to 10 per cent in 2020 (IenM, 2014).
The obligation is based upon the EU Guideline Renewable Energy. In 2020, member states are obliged to use a share of renewable energy for transport which corresponds to 10 per cent of the total use of fuels and electricity for transport.

Actual share of renewable energy

Due to differences in definitions, the realised share of renewable energy for transport according the EU Guideline does not correspond to the national obligation (CBS, 2016a). In 2016, the actual share of renewable energy amounted to 4.6 per cent.


Since 2007, suppliers of motor fuels for road traffic vehicles are obliged to supply these fuels with a certain percentage of biofuel. In practice, biofuel is usually blended (mixed) with normal petrol and diesel. This obligation is therefore often referred to as the 'blending obligation'.
When calculating the share of renewable energy, environmentally friendly biofuels are allowed to be counted double towards the target set by the Dutch government. Today, such biofuels are very important. In 2016, approximately 50 per cent of biofuels were counted double, especially biodiesel from frying fat.

Sustainability of biofuels

There has been much public and political discussion in recent years about the desirability of using biofuels in road traffic vehicles. As a result of these discussions, the EU Guideline includes sustainability criteria for reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, reduction of damage to nature and respect for social rights.


Archive for this indicator

Reference for this page

CBS, PBL, RIVM, WUR (2017). Use of renewable energy for transport, 2005-2016 (indicator 0535, version 16 , 21 September 2017 ). www.environmentaldata.nl. Statistics Netherlands (CBS), The Hague; PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, The Hague; RIVM National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, Bilthoven; and Wageningen University and Research, Wageningen.

The Environmental Data Compendium is a partnership of CBS, PBL, RIVM and WUR.